poor


poor
poor adj 1 Poor, indigent, needy, destitute, penniless, impecunious, poverty-stricken, necessitous are comparable when they mean having less money or fewer possessions than are required to support a full life.
Poor describes a person, a people, or an institution that comes under this description; it is the most general term of the group, applying not only to those who are in actual want or to those in straitened circumstances, but also to those who, as compared to other groups, live below the level of what is regarded as comfortable
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despite the death of the breadwinner, his family was not left poorWecter

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it wasn't only that they were not rich .. . but that they were so poor that they couldn't afford things— Mary Austin

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Between indigent and needy there is very little difference in meaning, both implying urgent and pressing want; both, but especially indigent, may be used to express the state of want to which those who are poor are reduced
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the depression had left a number of them indigent, without state or federal relief— Green Peyton

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will make contributions to needy groups of all races and creeds— Current Biog.

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there are many needy persons in this town

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needy children are provided with hot luncheons, free of cost

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Destitute goes further than any of these words in its implication of acute and dire need. It implies a lack of fundamental resources or a deprivation of basic necessities of life
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the fire rendered several poor families absolutely destitute

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the death of a destitute widow from starvation— Maclaren-Ross

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Penniless may imply a state of destitution or of indigence but it also may suggest an often temporary state of being without money; consequently, the term is susceptible of wider use than any of the others, sometimes connoting poverty or an approach to it and sometimes a mere transitory inconvenience
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the bright but penniless youth whose climb to fame rivaled the most incredible of the Alger stories— Amer. Guide Series: Minn.

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returned from her shopping trip penniless but triumphant

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Impecunious, though it carries practically the same basic suggestion as penniless, is not quite its equivalent; it may imply the deprivation of money but it more often suggests a habitual being without money and, sometimes, connotes also the habit of borrowing or of living upon one's friends
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I was, as many young barristers are, an impecunious party— Gilbert

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this eager impecunious young man who had fared so richly in his poverty— Wharton

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Poverty-stricken may be chosen as an espe-cially vivid word suggesting the state of one who is extremely indigent or actually destitute; it often connotes the suffering caused by this condition
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a wretched, poverty-stricken old couple

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the bulk of the pioneers was formed by poverty-stricken people who migrated from densely populated areas— J. F. Embree & W. L. Thomas

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Necessitous comes close to needy in meaning but often carries a clearer connotation of insistent or persistent demands for relief
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it holds out a shadow of present gain to a greedy and necessitous public— Burke

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according to sample surveys ... six percent are only "moderately in need." The rest are immoderately necessitousLiebling

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Antonyms: rich
Contrasted words: wealthy, affluent, opulent (see RICH)
2 *bad, wrong
Analogous words: *deficient, defective: *petty, puny, trivial, trifling, paltry: *base, low, vile
Contrasted words: *good, right: satisfying, fulfilling, meeting, answering (see SATISFY)

New Dictionary of Synonyms. 2014.

Synonyms:

Look at other dictionaries:

  • poor — W1S1 [po: US pur] adj comparative poorer superlative poorest ▬▬▬▬▬▬▬ 1¦(no money)¦ 2¦(not good)¦ 3¦(sympathy)¦ 4¦(not good at something)¦ 5¦(health)¦ 6 poor in something 7 a poor second/third etc …   Dictionary of contemporary English

  • Poor — Poor, a. [Compar. {Poorer} (?; 254); superl. {Poorest}.] [OE. poure or povre, OF. povre, F. pauvre, L. pauper; the first syllable of which is probably akin to paucus few (see {Paucity}, {Few}), and the second to parare to prepare, procure. See… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • poor — [ pur ] adjective *** ▸ 1 lacking money ▸ 2 of low quality ▸ 3 not good enough ▸ 4 not skillful ▸ 5 lacking something important ▸ 6 less than expected ▸ 7 feeling sorry for someone ▸ + PHRASES 1. ) having little money and few possessions: a poor… …   Usage of the words and phrases in modern English

  • poor — [poor] adj. [ME pore < OFr povre < L pauper, poor < IE base * pōu , small > FEW, FOAL] 1. a) lacking material possessions; having little or no means to support oneself; needy; impoverished b) indicating or characterized by poverty 2.… …   English World dictionary

  • Poor — is an adjective related to a state of poverty, low quality or pity.People with the surname Poor: * Charles Henry Poor, a US Navy officer * Charles Lane Poor, an astronomer * Edward Erie Poor, a vice president of the National Park Bank * Enoch… …   Wikipedia

  • poor — UK US /pɔːr/ US  /pʊr/ adjective ► having little money and/or few possessions: »It s offering to pay off 10 percent of the poor countries debt. »He came from a poor immigrant family. ► not good or operating well, or of a low quality or standard:… …   Financial and business terms

  • poor — ► ADJECTIVE 1) lacking sufficient money to live at a comfortable or normal standard. 2) of a low or inferior standard or quality. 3) (poor in) lacking in. 4) deserving pity or sympathy. ● the poor man s Cf. ↑the poor man s …   English terms dictionary

  • poor — (adj.) c.1200, from O.Fr. poure (Fr. pauvre), from L. pauper poor, perhaps a compound of paucus little and parare to get. Replaced O.E. earm. The poor boy sandwich, made of simple but filling ingredients, was invented and named in New Orleans in… …   Etymology dictionary

  • poor — [adj1] lacking sufficient money bad off*, bankrupt, beggared, beggarly, behind eight ball*, broke*, destitute, dirt poor*, down andout*, empty handed*, flat*, flat broke*, fortuneless, hard up*, impecunious, impoverished, indigent, in need,… …   New thesaurus

  • Poor — ist der Familienname folgender Personen: Enoch Poor (1736–1780), Schiffbauer und Händler aus Exeter, Brigadegeneral der Kontinentalarmee im Amerikanischen Unabhängigkeitskrieg. Salem Poor (* 1758), afroamerikanischer Soldat, der für seine… …   Deutsch Wikipedia